TIFF ’15” ‘Sky’ is a road trip film with no destination

Dunham Kruger Reedus Sky


Written by Fabienne Berthaud & Pascal Arnold
Directed by Fabienne Berthaud
France/Germany, 2015

For her latest film Sky, French director Fabienne Berthaud once again teams up with her muse Diane Kruger, to deliver an odd little film about a woman’s exploration of her new-found freedom.

Romy (Diane Kruger) and her husband Richard (Gilles Lellouche) are a couple of Parisians traveling through the American south-west in order to reinvigorate their dying marriage. A drunken night at a bar leads to an irreconcilable confrontation, and Romy sets out on her own, cutting ties with her former life.

Sky suffers from having an identity crisis. The movie takes the story in one direction before yanking it in another. Sky begins as a relationship exploration, teases becoming a crime film, switches gears and becomes a road trip movie before settling in as a romantic drama. Despite all the change ups, Sky moves at a leisurely pace that will be too slow for some. The film never quite drags, but it certainly meanders.

Dunham Kruger Reedus Sky

Kruger is the star and keeps the film afloat. Kruger and her “angel eyes” convey Romy’s longing as a woman cast adrift, ensuring the audience’s compassion as she winds up in a variety of unconventional situations.

The always amusing Lena Dunham shows up with a shaky performance as Billie, an impossibly fertile redneck. Dunham dives into her role with Daniel Day Lewis level commitment to her character by sporting a missing tooth. The film casts Norman Reedus as Diego, Romy’s love interest, and commitment-phobe. Reedus may as well be Daryl from The Walking Dead for all the range he shows; Diego is a rifle toting, beer drinking, bar fighting, park ranger that has a thing for hookers (commitment issues). The two characters are an odd pairing and make a fine if somewhat cliché onscreen couple. The problem is, it just isn’t memorable. Sky is an awkward little film, lacking in thematic nuance and featuring a bewildering yet likable lead character.

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